Thursday, November 27, 2008
Surat al Fatiha 5-7: "Thee (alone) we worship; Thee alone we ask for help. Show us the straight path, The path of those whom Thou hast favored; Not (the path) of those who earn Thine anger nor of those who went astray."
This is what we all strive for; direction in the right path. Recently I have been finding solace in relying on the Quran and authentic hadiths. With my limited knowledge of Islam, I find the hadiths to be the perfect bridge from the Quran though I know the Quran is the only perfect book written since it is from Allah (s.w.t). I am on a journey to learn as much about Islam as I can because while I enjoy learning from others, its time to start exploring myself.
According to the Cambridge history of Iran there are six major hadiths collections. Al-Sihah al-Sittah, is literally the translation for authentic six.
According to University of southern California, compendium of Muslim text, they state there are 4:
Sahih Bukhari, Sahih Muslim,Sunan Abu-Dawud, and Malik Muwatta.
I will start my personal journey with Sahih Bukhari and will strive to share my knowledge with others, inshallah.
Sahih Bukhari is a collection of sayings and deeds of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh), also known as the sunnah. The reports of the Prophet's sayings and deeds are called ahadith. Bukhari lived a couple of centuries after the Prophet's death and worked extremely hard to collect his ahadith. Each report in his collection was checked for compatibility with the Qur'an, and the veracity of the chain of reporters had to be painstakingly established. Bukhari's collection is recognized by the overwhelming majority of the Muslim world to be one of the most authentic collections of the Sunnah of the Prophet (pbuh).
Bukhari (full name Abu Abdullah Muhammad bin Ismail bin Ibrahim bin al-Mughira al-Ja'fai) was born in 194 A.H. and died in 256 A.H. His collection of hadith is considered second to none. He spent sixteen years compiling it, and ended up with 2,602 hadith (9,082 with repetition). His criteria for acceptance into the collection were amongst the most stringent of all the scholars of ahadith.
It is important to realize, however, that Bukhari's collection is not complete: there are other scholars who worked as Bukhari did and collected other authentic reports. Sahih Bukhari is divided into nine volumes, each of which has several books.